Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg will join Catherine Zeta-Jones to present the 2012 Mayor's Awards for Arts and Culture to six individuals and organizations in celebration of their outstanding contributions to New York City's cultural life. The Mayor will also present the NYC Handel Medallion, New York City's highest award for achievement in the arts, to Harvey Lichtenstein. The event, to be held at New York City Center, will feature live performances by leading performing arts organizations, and appearances by special guest artists.
The Mayor's Awards for Arts and Culture were created in 1976, when the Department of Cultural Affairs was founded, and given annually until 1994. Mayor Bloomberg revived the awards in 2004, with the assistance of the Cultural Affairs Advisory Commission, chaired by Agnes Gund, whose members are a diverse and distinguished group of advocates for the City's non-profit cultural community. The Awards acknowledge and celebrate the role individual artists, arts educators, cultural organizations, corporations and philanthropists play in the public-private partnerships that sustain the City's creative vitality and economic well-being.
Lead sponsorship is provided by Bank of America, with generous support from Agnes Gund and The Estée Lauder Companies Inc.